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Imitating Paul: A Discourse of Power (Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation) [Paperback]

By Elizabeth a. Castelli (Author)
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Item description for Imitating Paul: A Discourse of Power (Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation) by Elizabeth a. Castelli...

Overview
What does it mean to imitate another person? What relationships are possible and necessary, or unthinkable, because of exhortation advising people to imitate Paul? What are the effects of giving special status to likeness? Questions such as these are posed in this thought-provoking book that addresses the notion of mimesis (imitation) and how it functions in Paul's letters as a strategy of power. The Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation series explores current trends within the discipline of biblical interpretation by dealing with the literary qualities of the Bible: the play of its language, the coherence of its final form, and the relationships between text and readers. Biblical interpreters are being challenged to take responsibility for the theological, social, and ethical implications of their readings. This series encourages original readings that breach the confines of traditional biblical criticism.

Publishers Description

What does it mean to imitate another person? What relationships are possible and necessary, or unthinkable, because of exhortation advising people to imitate Paul? What are the effects of giving special status to likeness? Questions such as these are posed in this thought-provoking book that addresses the notion of mimesis (imitation) and how it functions in Paul's letters as a strategy of power.

The Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation series explores current trends within the discipline of biblical interpretation by dealing with the literary qualities of the Bible: the play of its language, the coherence of its final form, and the relationships between text and readers. Biblical interpreters are being challenged to take responsibility for the theological, social, and ethical implications of their readings. This series encourages original readings that breach the confines of traditional biblical criticism.

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Item Specifications...


Studio: Westminster John Knox Press
Pages   180
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.64" Width: 6.26" Height: 0.46"
Weight:   0.5 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 1, 1991
Publisher   Westminster John Knox Press
Series  Literary Currents In Biblical In  
ISBN  0664252346  
ISBN13  9780664252342  


Availability  99 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 20, 2017 07:07.
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  1. Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation


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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > Substores > jp-unknown1
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Bible & Other Sacred Texts > Bible > New Testament
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Commentaries > Commentaries
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > General


Christian Product Categories
Books > Bible Study > General Studies > General



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Reviews - What do customers think about Imitating Paul: A Discourse of Power (Literary Currents in Biblical Interpretation)?

A thought-provoking challenge to common views of Paul  Apr 17, 2004
Castelli examines the historical background for the notion of imitation in Greco-Roman societies and uses her findings to evaluate Paul's claim that Christians should imitate him (See Phil. 3:17; 1 Cor. 4:16; and 11:1. Compare 1 Thes. 1:6 and Gal. 4:12). Her analysis is informed by the work of Michel Foucault on the formation of power structures in Western culture. She writes clearly and presents her case well, but the study was produced as a doctoral dissertation and will prove very challenging for some undergraduate readers.

Castelli argues that Paul's use of imitation is a rhetorical strategy designed to undermine his opponents. She offers evidence that in Greco-Roman society sameness was valued more than difference, with difference often being viewed as a challenge to good order and the best interests of society. By inviting his readers to imitate him, Paul was taking advantage of this value system to further his own understanding of the gospel. Those who challenged his views are therefore portrayed as advocates of difference, intent on undermining order.

In a somewhat surprizing move, Castelli claims in her last chapter that she has avoided the issue of authorial intent. It does not matter whether or not Paul intended for his language to function in this way, she argues. The effect is there, no matter what his intent may have been.

I have used Castelli's book as an optional reading assignment in my undergraduate course on Paul, and it has proved beneficial in helping students think about the social effects of language, but it has also been difficult for some of them to follow.

 

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